USDA Secretary Blames DEA For Strict Hemp Rules

USDA Secretary Blames DEA For Strict Hemp Rules

The head of the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) recently said that the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is partly responsible for restrictive policies included in its hemp rules. At a House Agriculture Committee hearing last week, Secretary Sonny Perdue was asked to weigh in on concerns hemp producers have expressed about testing requirements for the crop. Under USDA’s interim final rule as drafted, farmers must use DEA-registered labs to conduct THC testing. Rep. Al Lawson (D-FL) echoed farmers who’ve argued that the restriction would inhibit the market’s growth by creating costly delays. The testing requirement is “making it a little challenging” for producers, he said. Purdue recognized the issue and was quick to note that USDA recently announced it would be temporarily lifting certain provisions, including testing rules, as agencies determine how to streamline the process. But he also indicated that DEA is putting pressure on the department to maintain strict regulations for marijuana’s non-intoxicating cannabis cousin. “There’s been some relaxation recently. This interim final rule, we didn’t get it nailed right in the bullseye and we tried to make some corrections there,” he said. “The testing and the limitations had a lot of impact from DEA and the interagency.” “They were not excited about the crop as a whole anyway. We had some pretty serious constraints,” he added. “We’re trying to address the lab issue, which was a real limitation.” It’s not clear why DEA seems to have an outsized influence over USDA’s hemp regulations. The crop was legalized…

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Source : MJ moment
Link to original : USDA Secretary Blames DEA For Strict Hemp Rules
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